How Big Do Air Plants Get? The 3 Largest Types And Encouraging Growth

how big do air plants get

Air plants, also known as Tillandsia, are a unique species of plant that does not need soil to survive. These hardy plants have evolved to thrive in the most extreme environments and can be found growing on rocks, trees, and even out of the sides of cliffs! But how big do air plants get?

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While some varieties remain quite small, others can grow up to two feet tall. In this article we’ll explore three of the largest types of air plants and provide tips for encouraging more growth for these fascinating species.

How Big Can Air Plants Get?

Depending on the type of air plant, these plants either stay fairly small, reaching only up to about 5 inches total, or the largest can be over 3 feet in width!

Air plants come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors. Some are small and delicate, while others can grow quite large. There are several factors that affect the size of an air plant, including the type of species, the amount of sunlight it receives, and the regularity of waterings. Species is one of the major factors when it comes to how big will your Tillandsia will get.

Some of the larger varieties can even reach up to two feet in height!

How Big Do Air Plants Get: The 3 Largest Varieties

Tillandsia xerographica

air plant xerographica, bigger than a person's head

This is one of the biggest air plant species and it can reach up to a whopping 2 feet tall! Its large, silvery leaves make it stand out from other varieties. Almost in it’s name, the xerographica is a xeric type of air plant, meaning it prefers dry climates, and can be partially the reason it is so much bigger than other varieties – it needs larger leaves to get the same amount of water the other types can get easily while still small.

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Tillandsia usneoides (Spanish moss)

spanish moss growing off a tree

While Spanish moss may not be one of the main things you think of when talking about air plants, this is a great example of how big can air plants get. These can grow to great lengths, reaching up to 10 feet long! It is a great option for those looking to add some greenery to their home with a hanging plant.

Tillandsia Caput Medusae

Tillandsia Caput Medusae

While this air plant may not grow as large as the other two listed, it can still be a quite large size after a few years of proper care, up to about 6 inches tall, and is wider than many of the other air plant varieties.

How Big Can Air Plants Get: Tips For Growing Larger Air Plants

When watering air plants, use lukewarm water and soak them for 15 minutes to ensure that the leaves get fully saturated. Doing this once every week or so should be enough for most air plants. If you can, try finding a more natural source of water like rain water to soak them in, rather than water from the tap.

If your air plant is not getting enough sunlight, it can stunt its growth. Try to find a spot for it that receives bright, indirect sunlight for at least four hours a day.

Fertilizing your air plants can also aid in encouraging more growth. While it is not necessary to fertilize air plants, using fertilizer once every other month can encourage your plant to grow.

Keep reading: how fast do air plants grow?

How Big Do Air Plants Get: In Summary

Air plants, also known as Tillandsia, are a unique species of plant that does not need soil to survive. They come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors. Depending on the type of air plant, these plants either stay fairly small, reaching only up to about 5 inches total, or the largest can be over 3 feet in width! The Tillandsia xerographica is one of the biggest air plant species and can reach up to a whopping 2 feet tall. So make sure to do your homework on which type of air plant you’re getting if you want a larger plant!

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